Some retailers have spent years building out their own transportation and logistics networks. But give Shippo a month and the San Francisco Bay Area-based company can grow those capabilities exponentially at the click of a button.
That’s the value proposition behind Shipping Elements, the company’s latest solution that provides e-commerce platforms with a full suite of embedded fulfillment and delivery functionality to offer to their merchant customers.
These days, for an e-commerce platform to find a competitive advantage, it needs to offer more than just a place to sell. As many merchants find out the hard way, the sale is only one piece of the puzzle.
Even with an e-commerce firm providing that online storefront, the burden of managing the post-sale experience is typically placed on the sellers, forcing them to either build their own fleets or work with a disjointed network of 3PLs.
Shipping Elements, though, is designed to remove that complexity for platforms and merchants alike.
Rather than build out their own shipping tech stacks, e-commerce platforms can instead leverage Shippo’s streamlined solution, which handles each aspect of the delivery from carrier matching to shipment tracking to returns. The integration takes less than 30 days.
Merchants, meanwhile, no longer need to familiarize themselves with APIs from Shippo or other providers. By selling on a platform with Shipping Elements, they can let Shippo’s embedded workflow handle delivery and fulfillment, allowing them to focus on adding value for their users.
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“We’re building the shipping layer of the internet, and essential to that is making it easier and faster for platforms to integrate our shipping technology,” said Andreas Lieber, chief operating officer of Shippo.
“By making key elements of the Shippo platform available in the form of simple, pre-built components, we’re able to bring our shipping expertise to e-commerce platforms, online marketplaces and 3PLs that don’t have the same resources and focus dedicated to specific shipping challenges we do on a day-to-day basis.”
The launch of Shipping Elements follows last month’s announcement that Shippo earned the first-ever Platform Account with FedEx. Before then, the massive carrier had only offered accounts to individual merchants, providing them with perks like discounted rates.
Shippo, though, became the first multicarrier shipper to secure such an agreement, allowing it to offer those benefits directly to its merchants.
As things stand, Shippo resides near the top of a growing list of multicarrier shipping software providers, which also includes companies like ProShip and EasyPost. The model has gained traction in recent months because it allows sellers to compare rates among national and regional carriers, and it can be a great way to manage capacity amid spikes in demand.
Now, it appears that at least part of Shippo’s goal is making that model accessible to as many merchants as possible. Adding embedded shipping workflows within e-commerce platforms is a great start.
Click for more FreightWaves articles by Jack Daleo.
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